You know what a bar really needs? Free parking!

Although drunk driving fatalities have been on the decline for decades, someone still gets killed by a drunk driver every 45 minutes or so.

So why on earth do cities such as Long Beach require that bars provide off-street parking?

The effect, of course, is to encourage people to drive to bars because, hey, there's free parking.

This, via the Straight Outta Suburbia blog, who links to Long Beach's code, which requires 20 off-street parking spaces for every 1,000 square feet of space at a tavern.

The blogger then lets it rip on suburban planning:

This is how insane our mentality is. Even bars, businesses whose sole purpose is to sell alcohol for on-site consumption, “need” off-street parking. Even though we know that people drive to them, drink, and drive home. Drink and drive. Yeah, lets make sure these people have plenty of free parking.

We should note that Long Beach is by no means alone. We're awaiting a call back from the Long Beach planning department.

LA Weekly